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NEWS RELEASE: Officers who tackled armed robbers in line for national bravery award

  • Posted On 28 Jun 2017

    Posted In


    Bravery, Awards, Grange

    Please see below Press Statement FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE.


    Officers who tackled armed robbers in line for national bravery award


    Two West Midlands Police officers who confronted and chased armed robbers have been nominated for a national Police Bravery Award.


    PCs Ryan Patel and James Neilson were out on patrol when they spotted masked men entering a corner shop. The officers arrived at the scene as the men were coming out and PC Neilson used his incapacitant spray in one’s face but this had little effect and he ran off.


    A second masked man stumbled and fell out of the shop and the officers could see he was holding a revolver pistol.


    Knowing the potential dangers, PC Neilson took advantage of the man’s fall and attempted to restrain him. At one point during the struggle, the offender pressed the firearm against the officer’s chest, barrel first.


    PC Neilson remained composed, despite the fear he must have felt, and was able to wrestle the weapon away from the man. PC Patel used a baton to try to strike the offender but he managed to escape the officers’ grasps.


    He did not know if the gun was part of an arsenal or a lone weapon and yet PC Patel chased the man, following him into a large housing estate. Although he was alone, and knowing he could be outnumbered if he did find the offender, PC Patel continued to search for the man. He only left when directed to by his duty sergeant.


    The efforts of PC Patel provided significant intelligence which later helped armed police conduct a full search of the area, leading to the recovery of vital evidence. PC Neilson ensured the firearm was kept safely until it could be removed from the scene.


    Tom Cuddeford, chair of West Midlands Police Federation which nominated the two officers for the bravery awards, said: “Despite unimaginable fear, PC Neilson fought with an armed man, and PC Patel put himself in a situation where he was alone and unarmed in order to try to catch a criminal.


    “It is important to honour and recognise this kind of bravery. We should all be proud that these officers are part of the West Midlands force.”


    The officers will have their actions recognised at the 22nd Police Bravery Awards in London next month. The awards honour and recognise police officers who perform outstanding acts of bravery while on or off duty. They are hosted by the Police Federation of England and Wales and sponsored by Police Mutual.


    Steve Grange JBB Secretary                                                                       

    West Midlands Police Federation

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